Review: Amazon Echo (2nd Generation)

Clear voice

With ready-made sound on the voice assistant, only the language barrier stands between us and the automated work tasks.

Amazon Echo
Amazon Echo (2nd Generation)

Our verdict

A compact and appealing appearance, clear speech sound and also a stable and good control system compared to other devices. Two can be paired in stereo.
The sound is tame on music, you have to take some detours to get the speaker connected in Norway, and Alexa does not understand Norwegian.
  • Type: Smart speaker
  • Management system: Amazon Alexa
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
  • Connection: 3.5mm aux
  • Speaker element: 2.5 ”bass, 1” treble
  • Dimensions: 14.8 x 8.8 x 8.8 cm
  • Colors: black, gray and many more
  • Other: Works in stereo pairs
  • Web: amazon.com
Show more
Show less

Price: £ 39

After drawing an Amazon account with a street address in a supported country (we used U.K.), the initial setup is straightforward and intuitive. If you have a smart product that you do not find with “add device”, then it may still exist as a “skill”. We noticed this, for example, with our robot vacuum cleaner from iRobot, which Alexa installed as a skill.

Control of smart lights (Philips Hue) in the desired room is playfully easy, the robot vacuum cleaner is sent out on a sweep, and the system behaves very stably.

Since we do not have an Amazon Music account, we have not tested this, but every time we want to play music, we get the error message that the service is not connected. If, on the other hand, we ask Alexa to play a given song on Spotify, then the song will come. Mostly. Sometimes the song is not found, even though we know it is on Spotify and Alexa pronounces the name correctly. Tidal is otherwise officially supported by Alexa, but not in Norway.

The sound is perfectly fine, with clear speech. But no pronounced musician, until it becomes too flat and unengaging. Fortunately, the speaker can be connected to better sound systems with Bluetooth or cable. You can alternatively connect two Echo speakers in stereo, the money should then perhaps be spent on a fatter speaker.

Conclusion

Echo is a nice little speaker, with a great finish and good design. It does little of itself and blends in with the interior. Little of it unfortunately also makes it sonic. Clear speech is all well and good, but the music sounds in the flattest layer. But in fact nothing flatter than a couple of competitors with larger physical goals. Ease of use is very good, if you master English and can live with the fact that not all services and products are supported in Norway.

Thanks for reading Tech Reviews.

Create your free account or to continue reading.

Lost your password? Please enter your email address. You will receive mail with link to set new password.

.

Alternatives to Amazon Echo (2nd Generation)

JBL L82 Classic

Let The Good Times Roll

The compact JBL L82 Classic offers so much fun for the money, that we call them the best in class.

DALI Oberon On-Wall C

Integrates with the surroundings

Dali has made its wireless technology available at a price that most people can relate to. And in a size everyone can accomodate.

SRS-XB33 & SRS-XB43

Party on the go

Sony's new generation of wireless speakers with extra bass sounds even better than before.

Belkin Soundform Elite

Belkin breaks the sound barrier

A network specialist and a high-end audio company have joined forces to create a smart speaker with hi-fi quality.

Harman Kardon Citation One MKII

Greatly improved Citation

Harman Kardon Citation One MKII sounds like a much larger speaker. Far more harmonious sound than in the first edition.

Sonus faber Lumina III

Hand-built sound quality

Sonus faber Lumina III is the obvious choice of speakers for smaller rooms

Sony HT-G700

Impressive sound

Few soundbars can simulate surround sound like the Sony HT-G700.

JERN W8000

Columbus egg in cast iron

Audioform has made a speaker that is so cheap and good that everyone can join.

Sigberg Audio Inkognito 12 onwall

Bass beast on the wall

Finally, an interior friendly subwoofer that delivers real physical bass! Sure, it will cost you but the returns include gorgeously musical bass notes and hefty low-frequency effects i movies. And best of all: you can hang it on your wall.

Samsung HW-Q66T lifestyle

The most balanced sound

If you are willing to give up Dolby Atmos and DTS: X, there is hardly any better soundbar for the price, than the Samsung HW-Q66T.